In case you were unaware, these are tumultuous times for SoundCloud. This is partly why I haven’t been too eager about buying a subscription and uploading all of my legacy podcast episodes to the platform.
Although they were able to strike a licensing deal with Universal Music Group in January, their financial reports reveal that their expenses are overtaking their revenue rather quickly.
Despite that, and perhaps because of that, they just announced SoundCloud Go, a subscription service that allows you to access more tracks – both by established and emerging artists – lets you listen offline, and offers an an ad-free listening experience. SoundCloud Go is only available in the US right now, but will be rolling out to other countries later in the year.
If you’re already a US SoundCloud creator with a Pro Unlimited account, SoundCloud Go will only cost you $4.99 per month for the first six months.
That’s all well and good for fans and listeners, but I know what you really want to know is how artists will be affected by this. According to SoundCloud:
With the launch of SoundCloud Go, creators can now reach more listeners in more places, and do so in the most diverse content ecosystem in audio streaming. In other words? Your tracks are in good company. With our algorithm-fueled discovery features, your best work could be queued up after a chart-topping hit – and your next biggest fan could be one click away.
Sadly, this is a cumbersome statement with a lot of filler words most artists aren’t likely to care about, like “content ecosystem”, and “algorithm-fueled discovery features”, but basically what they’re trying to say is that there is the chance you’ll get more plays, because your song might be in rotation right after a top 40 hit. Cool idea – not sure how it will work in practice.
Other than that, I must say it sounds a lot like other streaming services that are already available. But it’s fairly apparent that SoundCloud needs the money, and if you are a supporter of what they’re trying to do, and you live in the US, you might want to consider taking advantage of their new subscription service.